Newsletter 10 Dec 2015


Merry Christmas

and Happy Holidays

from Papatoetoe central school


From the Principal

10 December 2015

Dear parents and caregivers

This is our last newsletter of the year and a time to say thank you and our very warmest wishes for the festive season and for our very special Christmas celebrations in New Zealand.

Whanau Day Tomorrow:We are very excited about our Christmas concerts in the hall and picnic day on the field tomorrow. We are certainly hoping for fine weather at lunchtime for your picnics around 12.45pm.

Herb Plant Sale – Outside the hall: There will be a sale of herb plants outside the hall on Friday morning and at lunchtime. Each plant is only $2.00 and your purchases will support the continuation of our school gardens. Thank you for your support.

Xmas Presents clip art

Christmas Concert times:

Year 1 and 3: 10.30am

Year 2 and 4: 11.15am

Year 5 and 6: 12 noon

You are welcome to take your children with you after the picnic if you wish (we have had a number of requests). If you do so, you must inform your child’s class teacher before leaving the school grounds.

Market Day:Thank you also for your great support for our children’s market on 27 November. The funds raised – $1,257.00, will be used as “seeding” funds for our environment programme in 2016. The market provides the opportunity for children to design and make a product for sale – there was some good bartering going on too at the point of sale!

A fantastic year:Everyone has worked very hard throughout the year and we are very pleased with the progress in achieving and exceeding our student achievement targets to be included in the annual report in 2016. Most students have worked very hard and I am sure that most of you will be pleased with their end of year reports that I have just finished signing. We will continue our strong focus on catering for the learning needs of all students next year in an exceptional way.

Congratulations to staff:We congratulate a number of our staff who have been studying towards additional professional qualifications including diplomas, post graduate diplomas and masters degrees at The University of Auckland. We are very proud of Rachel Cromie, Charles Liu, Renu Naidu, Sarin Nand and Michelle Prasad. It requires real dedication to work full time and study as well, and they have all done extremely well.

Involvement of our students:Our Student Council has continued to function very well again this year under the super leadership of Sarin Nand. We are committed to having a strong student voice in the school and to providing leadership opportunities for the children. The talent show, organised and hosted by the school council was again a huge success this year and has become a highlight in our school calendar.

2016 Initiatives:We are very excited about what we have planned for 2016 already and after the Christmas break, we are all ready to go with our exciting plans for 2016. These include continued science and technology lessons each week for all students, taken by our specialist teacher Lena Erakovich, and the introduction of Physical Education specialisation for all students. This weekly lesson will be taken by Peter Robinson. Peter is keen to increase the fitness levels and physical skills of our students.

Our focus on maths will continue in 2016 with the introduction of Prime Maths from year two next year. Prime Maths is a more structured and formal maths programme that we feel better meets the needs of our students. We will continue with extension maths for our very able mathematicians in year four, five and six.

My sincere thanks: At this time of the year I also like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the numerous people in our school community who support our school.

Firstly, I wish to thank sincerely our Board of Trustees. Stan Good our chairperson, does an absolutely outstanding job. Other trustees including Teresa Bews, Shaundra Biggs, Christine Hutchby, Navtej Randhawa and Gerry Smutz, also make an outstanding contribution to our BoT. I would also like to acknowledge the excellent work of Lorraine Biggs, the BoT secretary. Without exception they are all superb members of our Board. They support me, our staff and your children in a truly exceptional way. The children and their needs are always at the centre of all decision making. We are all extremely fortunate to have such a committed, talented and supportive Board.

I would also like to thank the PTA who have raised over $17,000.00 for our school this year. I enjoy very much working with this group also, as like the BoT, they are very committed to our school and to providing the best that they can for your children. Special thanks to Shara Henderson, Michael and Barbara Lucas, Harsha Chhima, Vicki Young, Nadia Wilson, Brenda Powell, Navtej Rhandawa, and Sharlene Howe. Over the year they have run a chocolate sale, a disco, sausage sizzles and the annual Christmas raffle. I would like to also thank parents and caregivers for your wonderful support for the PTA fund raising activities. Thank you all so much.

To all other supporters and helpers, a big thank you. Without your assistance we would be unable to offer such a wide range of activities for the children. We value hugely the partnership that we have with you. You are always welcome at school – our doors are always open and we are committed to working with you to support and enhance every aspect of your children’s learning.

I also wish to thank all staff at our school – administration and support staff, learning assistants, the property team, our senior leadership team, and all our teachers for doing a great job again this year. You work for our children and commitment to our school is very much appreciated. You are all stars!

English Language Learning:In 2016 we are increasing the number of learning assistants in the school. There will be two assistants in year one, two, three and four who will work with students who require extra support with learning English.

Staff leaving:At the end of this year there are six teachers who are leaving us. These include four teachers who have been with us on one-year contracts or for a short time – Loleshni Kumar, Saileshwar Singh, Te Paea Watford and Nicola Wilson. We wish them all the very best for the future and thank them very sincerely for their contributions to our school.

Long-serving teachers Cath MacDonald and Dev Singh are also moving on to new changes and challenges in their lives.

Cath has been with us for seven years since she began her teaching career and we wish her all the best as she moves with her family and her horses to the far north to live on an incredibly lovely lifestyle block. I have never worked with anyone who is so kind so caring about her students. Cath has been a wonderful teacher and a very committed and loyal member of our staff.

Dev has been with us for over seven years and we wish her all the best also. Dev started here as a learning assistant and once we found out that she was a trained teacher, we snapped her up! Dev has been a wonderful teacher also and she has also willingly shared her philosophy of life and her many talents with us. Dev has also been a strong and caring advocate for her community.

We wish Cath and Dev all the very best for the future and thank them also very sincerely for their valuable and hugely appreciated contribution to our school.

Year 6 students leaving for intermediate school:We wish our year 6 students all the very best also, as they move on to intermediate school. They have been a wonderful group of school leaders. We had a fantastic graduation dinner last night in the school hall. It was a wonderful celebration of the end of six years of primary schooling for the students.

Graduation Dinner

Reading÷ over summer:As always, we request that you ensure your children continue to do a lot of reading over the summer. This is extremely important. Recent research by a team from the University of Auckland Woolf Fisher Research Centre has stressed the critical importance of children continuing to read regularly over the summer holidays. If reading does not continue, the research indicates a drop of up to 3 months in a child’s reading comprehension progress. Please support us and your child by ensuring that they read regularly over the holidays.

Our local Papatoetoe library is a wonderful resource and the staff there can help you to choose appropriate reading material for your children. Your children can also attend their annual “Dare to Explore” programme. The theme for this year’s summer programme is “Dare to Unlock the Secret” which sounds very exciting.   There is no charge and children really enjoy what is on offer.

My personal message: As always, I am looking forward to spending Christmas with my growing family. We have two delightful grandsons and we are all looking forward to the addition of a wee granddaughter in January. It continues to be such a blessing to see our children with their own families and to observe our special family traditions continuing in the next generation. I love them all so much.

The world feels a much harsher place these days after a year of some horrific events that are continuing around the world. I constantly feel grateful that up until now, NZ has continued to be a very safe place to live in and like me, I am sure that you appreciate this, also. Let’s all hope and pray that our safety continues.

Over the summer break, I do hope that you can all enjoy some wonderful times with your very special children. It can be a time to re-connect with friends and other family members, to share in the festive season and the true meaning of Christmas, of peace and goodwill to all.

Your children have all had a busy year at school and they are ready for a lovely break. There is so much to see and do around Auckland. If you are planning some time away out of Auckland, do take care on the roads. We will look forward to welcoming the children back on Tuesday 2 February 2016

My warmest wishes to each and everyone of you for a very lovely Christmas and all the very best for 2016.


Marilyn Gwilliam


General Notices

Welcome to our new students; Rian Gounder, Darshil Ram, TJ Moka and Naman Singh

Newsletter – Receiving Electronically: We are trialing sending the Newsletter out electronically. If you have an email address you will receive an electronic copy and a hard copy .

If you would like to receive this electronically and have not supplied an email address please let the office know.   Email


PTA Raffle Results

  • 1st Prize     Nanna Kataraina
  • 2nd Prize    Paea Watford
  • 3rd Prize     Lotosina Tavui
  • 4th Prize     Sarah Allan

Thanks to everyone for their support


Term 4 Events

  • Friday, 11 December – Christmas Whanau Day
  • Thursday, 17 December – Year 6 Graduation Assembly to be seated in hall by 11.30am
  • Thursday, 17 December – Last day of school – 12.45pm closing



  • Wednesday, 27th January 2016    9.00 am   to 3.00 pm
  • Thursday, 28th January 2016       9.00 am to   6.00 pm
  • Friday, 29th January 2016            9.00 am   to 3.00 pm
  • School Start date for 2016 – Tuesday 2nd February 2016.  Please be at school by 8.30am




Christmas Concert Years 5 & 6: December 11, 2015 at 12:00 pm

Christmas Concert Years 2 & 4: December 11, 2015 at 11:15 am

Christmas Concert Years 1 & 3: December 11, 2015 at 10:30 am

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